One of our favourite interviews of last year, we revisit our catch-up with Maria Hatzistefanis, the beauty powerhouse behind Rodial and Nip + Fab.
Editor-turned-global makeup and skincare mogul, Maria Hatzistefanis is a forced to be reckoned with within the beauty world. She launched her London-based brand Rodial back in 1999 and it has gone on to become one of the most recognised names in beauty, with hero products such as Dragon’s Blood Cream and Snake Serum (don’t worry, neither actually contain dragons or snakes). Maria then launched sister beauty brand, Nip + Fab, secured one of the most famous faces in the world, Kylie Jenner no less, for the campaign and boom! global recognition ensued.
Maria is still at the helm of both brands and is one of the most respected businesswomen in beauty. She’s amassed over 800K Instagram followers, launched a YouTube behind-the-scenes series, has two bestselling business books under her belt and has just launched her first podcast, Overnight Success.
Although originally from Greece, Maria is an honorary Londoner – her business is rooted here, her team is here and she embodies all that London has to offer. Under normal circumstances we’d be asking Maria to open her black book and share her favourite restaurants, breakfast meeting spots, gyms and beauty destinations, but seeing as London is on lockdown, we caught up with her to find out how she’s coping during these challenging times. From working from home and organising her team to prioritising ‘me-time’, here’s what Maria’s lockdown in London looks like…
How are you feeling given the current situation?
These are uncertain times for all of us but I’m trying to stay positive and see this as an opportunity to learn new ways of working and being productive.
Who are you isolating with and how are you all finding it?
I live with my husband and two teenage boys so it can get crazy at times, but it’s great to be together as a family.
What’s been the most challenging thing about lockdown so far?
When I want to film my Instagram content and my husband is makes fun of me!
What is your number one lockdown skincare tip?
Masking is extremely important during the lockdown as we don’t have access to all our plumping skincare treatments and facials.
It is actually very impressive what you can achieve from using the right masks and much more cost efficient. I use the Rodial Pink Diamond Lifting Mask; it feels like a hyaluronic injection and Botox in one.
What are the three products could you not live without right now?
- Rodial Snake Jelly Eye patches for dark circles, depuffing and cooling from all this time indoors
- Rodial Dragon’s Blood Sculpting Gel – for thirsty skin. I love this formula as it’s extra hydrating while cooking and lightweight at the same time
- Rodial Banana Lowlighter, the one and only product for under the eyes and to conceal any shadows – perfect for those Zoom calls!
Happiness is letting go of what you think your life is supposed to look like and celebrating everything that it is.
How are you finding working from home?
At the beginning, I couldn’t even imagine how this would work, especially managing a big team and different departments. But we were quick to set everyone up within 48 hours and we have found a new normal.
I start my calls every day at 9am on Zoom and then have calls scheduled every half an hour for the morning. Then emails and creative work and some more conference calls at the end of the day.
What tools and tricks are you using to stay organised and on top of it all?
I am a bit old-fashioned with a pad, a pen and my iPhone. For me it’s not about the tools, it’s all about being intentional with your day.
How do you differentiate between working hours and family time?
I keep my usual morning routine of waking up at 6am, meditate and do a quick at-home workout. Then I put on my “work” outfit, fix my hair, put a bit of Rodial makeup on.
When I finish my day, I go for a walk, have a bath and change into sweats for the evening.
What does your work outfit look like?
Black leggings, a black tank top and either flat slides or, if I am in the mood, I throw in some black leather mules.
Tell us about your at-home exercise routine.
I like to follow a schedule and I am registered to this London-based streaming service called The Boxx, it has daily 30-minute strength workouts first thing in the morning.
Do you give yourself some me-time to relax?
As always, my morning routine is my time to myself. I had it when I worked at the office and I still keep it now. It’s something I’ve always done and dedicated a whole chapter to the importance of a morning routine in my book, Make It Happen.
Let’s talk food. What have you been cooking?
Easy stuff like salads and grilled chicken or fish.
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What have you been watching in lockdown?
I’ve already watched most of the shows Netflix has to offer by now, but love the new season of The Money Heist.
Are you taking this time to plan any business projects?
A couple of years ago, I started a podcast called Overnight Success. I finished the first season and I have been thinking for a while to record season two, but the time never seemed right.
After a few days into quarantine, I started getting a lot of messages and comments from small business owners for tips and advice on how to get through the Coronavirus crisis and I said to myself, “right, the time has come!”
So I put together a season of 10 episodes that are all about not just surviving but thriving during crisis.
How are you spending your lockdown weekends?
It’s actually really busy during the week so I’m always looking forward to the weekend and not having to make a thousand calls a day.
I take time to read, relax, take my once-a-day walk and play board games with the boys.
Talking of the boys, how is homeschooling going?
I am surprised about how well organised the schools have been with offering online lessons – the boys have said they actually focus more at home. So far, so good. The only thing they are really missing, other than their friends of course, is sports.
What are you most looking forward to once we come out the other side?
Seeing my team again and meeting up and having our brainstorming sessions and just having fun together. My office is my second home and my team are my family. I can’t wait to go back and see them all again.